What Your Back Pain is Trying to Tell You
Your back has been killing you lately. It seems to hurt all the time and the effects of back pain have begun creeping into your daily life. You have trouble sleeping, working, and/or relaxing due to back pain. Pain signals are indicative of something going wrong in your body, but it doesn’t always mean the obvious thing, which is that something is injured. What is that pain trying to tell you? Here are a few things it may be trying to say.
Stress is bad for you, period. It’s really bad for your back, too. When you’re stressed, your muscles tend to be tight. Tight muscles can lead to back pain and an increased likelihood of actual back injuries. It may even lead to back spasms, where muscles tighten and stay that way, potentially causing intense pain and lack of function.
You Need to Improve Your Posture
Between common poor muscle tone, technology use, and careers that require us to sit for a hefty portion of the day, your posture probably stinks. Hunching and slouching puts undue pressure on your back muscles, bones, and ligaments. Try being more conscious of your posture and straighten up each time you realize you’re not sitting up straight. The more you use appropriate posture, the stronger your postural muscles get, creating long-term postural improvements.
Your Muscles are Imbalanced
Your musculoskeletal system is all tied together. One tight or weak muscle may cause your every movement to be a little lopsided. In an effort to compensate, you may lean more heavily on one side of your core than the other or assume a poor posture. You likely won’t even notice you’re doing it. A physical therapist may be able identify and help you correct this type of issue.
Your Exercise Form is Flawed
Using good form when you’re exercising is important in preventing injury. Lifting weights or even exercises using only your body weight can contribute to back pain. Consult with a personal trainer or physical therapist to make sure your exercise form isn’t contributing to your back pain.
Get Help for Your Back Pain
If you’re experiencing back pain that lasts more than a couple days and doesn’t get better with at-home care, see your physician. They may send you to a pain specialist for evaluation and treatment. Seeking help early can help prevent further injury.